90. Paidi O’Reilly

The Iowa Idea: Paidi O’Reilly

“We have to innovate the way we innovate.”

In this episode of The Iowa Idea Podcast, I’m joined by Paidi O’Reilly. This is another show that draws on the connections between Iowa and Cork.

Paidi is an innovation specialist, lecturer, and trainer focused on building innovation teams that pursue bolder targets by thinking bigger, starting smaller, but moving faster. He has guided and mentored individuals and teams innovating in EMC, Dell, Motorola, VMWare, IBM, Google, Facebook, Amazon, Central Bank, and Bank of Ireland, among others. In 2011 he was awarded a PhD for his action-based research into the innovation models of organizations. He is Co-Founder and Chair of the Digital Transformation Lab at Cork University Business School, which is a peer learning network for sharing digital transformation best practices. He is Co-Founder of the Action Design Research Seminar Series in Cork University Business School for professionals doing high quality practice-oriented research. He is Co-Director of the ‘Innovation through Design Thinking’ postgraduate program at University College Cork.

Paidi and I dig into effectual innovation as a proven way of kickstarting innovation in organizations that leads to an organic shift in mindset, skillset, behavior, and ultimately culture. From his decades of experience with innovation practices at the ready, we talk about what works, what doesn’t, and the organizational gap between the importance and desire executives place on innovation and the lack of sustainable innovation found in most organizations. We discuss the power of small teams, working with the resources that we have at hand, the importance of feedback and learning through our prototypes. These prototypes don’t need to be physical, they can be stories, or diegetic prototypes. I loved Paidi’s framing of reverent irreverence. Which reminds me of a sign my grandfather had hanging above his bar – “Irish diplomacy, the art of telling someone to go to hell and having them look forward to the trip.”

I appreciated Paidi’s perspective related to technology, innovation, and teams, and why the “human bit” is really the hard part. We need to enable and empower our innovation teams if we’re to realize the power and potential of innovation. We talk about design and the importance of humanity-centered design, as we are confronted with large-scale, truly wicked problems. We look at the fabric of an innovation ecosystem, the importance of diverse teams, the need to be intentional, and a bias for action, as critical elements for the futures that we design and how we might create the potential for the people in the ecosystem to be their best selves.

It was a pleasure having Paidi join me on the podcast. I look forward to the time I can join Paidi for a pint in Cork and swap more stories about innovation. I hope you enjoy the episode. Slàinte!

About Paidi

Paidi is an Innovation Specialist, Lecturer, and Trainer focused on building innovation teams that pursue bolder targets by thinking bigger, starting smaller, but moving faster. Effectual innovation is a proven way of kickstarting innovation in organizations that leads to an organic shift in mindset, skillset, behavior, and ultimately culture. Paidi has over 28 years of experience working on and leading innovation projects in a range of leading organizations. He has guided and mentored individuals and teams innovating in EMC, Dell, Motorola, VMWare, IBM, Google, Facebook, Amazon, Central Bank, Bank of Ireland, AIB, etc. In 2011 he was awarded a PhD for his action-based research into the innovation models of organizations. Paidi has a track record of delivering national and international innovation talks, seminars, and workshops. He is Co-Founder and Chair of the Digital Transformation Lab at Cork University Business School, which is a peer learning network for sharing digital transformation best practices. He is Co-Founder of the Action Design Research Seminar Series in Cork University Business School for professionals doing high quality practice-oriented research. He is Co-Director of the ‘Innovation through Design Thinking’ postgraduate programme at University College Cork.

Links

Paidi on LinkedIn: www.linkedin.com/in/paidioreilly

Paidi’s email: p.oreilly@ucc.ie

Credits

Episode produced by Spark Consulting Group (www.inspiredbyspark.com) in Iowa City, with support from Executive Podcast Solutions (https://www.executivepodcastsolutions.com/).

The Iowa Idea Podcast theme music written and performed by Paisley Bible (https://paisleybible.bandcamp.com/).

89. Ed Morrison

The Iowa Idea: Ed Morrison

“There’s no best practice, only promising practices.”

In this episode of The Iowa Idea Podcast, I’m joined by Ed Morrison. Ed is director of the Agile Strategy Lab at the University of North Alabama. Ed started his career in Washington, DC, where he was legislative assistant to an Ohio congressman, staff attorney in the Office of Policy Planning for the Federal Trade Commission.

After leaving Washington, he joined a corporate strategy consulting firm, where he conducted strategy studies for large companies like Ford, Volvo, and General Electric. After his work as a corporate strategy consultant, Ed consulted with communities and regions on how to tackle the complex challenges of building a prosperous economy in an era of globalization. Frustrated with existing approaches to these issues, more than 25 years ago he began working on a new methodology for developing strategy in open, loosely connected networks, now called Strategic Doing.

Ed and I dig into the importance of guiding complex collaborations and how those collaborations emerge from conversations. Civil, respectful conversations, rooted in appreciative inqury and what my friend Adam Hansen (guest on episode 30). calls “forness” are ways for us to shape these conversations.

Like all complex adaptive systems there are no best practices, only promising practices, which can be guided by some simple rules and principles. I appreciate Ed sharing the history and evolution of Strategic Doing, as a different and necessary approach to strategy. We talk about the insights Ed has gained in over 20 years of developing the practice. At its core, is the importance of creating a safe place for civil conversations to impact change. Strategic Doing is a form of agile strategy. Some of Ed’s early inspiration came from looking at the open-source software development ecosystems. Ed describes the importance of teams and shares some of the powerful lessons learned working to reduce teenage violence in Flint, MI.

We discuss some of the global changes, starting in the 1970s, that transformed our economic and civic ecosystems into a much more complex and adaptive systems.  Changes where old, local strategic practices are no longer suited for the challenges of global changes and complexity. Those changes include trade regulations and the growth of the internet. It’s been said that strategic plans don’t survive first contact with the enemy; or as the philosopher Mike Tyson said, everyone has a plan until they’re punched in the face. Strategic Doing provides an agile, responsive way for us to collaborate at scale and address the truly complex and wicked problems our communities face.

As a fan and practitioner of Strategic Doing, it was a pleasure having Ed join me on the podcast. I hope you enjoy the episode.

About Ed

Ed Morrison is director of the Agile Strategy Lab at the University of North Alabama. Ed started his career in Washington, DC, where he was legislative assistant to an Ohio congressman, staff attorney in the Office of Policy Planning for the Federal Trade Commission, and a staff member for the Senate Democratic Policy Committee. In that role, he managed floor legislation involving tax, trade, and competitiveness.

After leaving Washington, he joined a corporate strategy consulting firm, where he conducted strategy studies for large companies like Ford, Volvo, and General Electric. After his work as a corporate strategy consultant, Ed consulted with communities and regions on how to tackle the complex challenges of building a prosperous economy in an era of globalization. Frustrated with existing approaches to these issues, more than 25 years ago he began working on a new methodology for developing strategy in open, loosely connected networks, now called Strategic Doing. This work aligns with what scholars now call “open strategy.”

Ed began his academic career in 2003 as director of the Center for Regional Economic Issues at Case Western Reserve University. In 2005, he moved to Purdue University, where he was a member of the professional staff at the Purdue Center for Regional Development. In 2016, he founded the Agile Strategy Lab at Purdue. In 2020, he founded the Agile Strategy Lab at the University of North Alabama.

Links

Strategic Doing Institute https://strategicdoing.net

Agile Strategy Lab  https://agilestrategylab.org

Credits

Episode produced by Spark Consulting Group (www.inspiredbyspark.com) in Iowa City, with support from Executive Podcast Solutions (https://www.executivepodcastsolutions.com/).

The Iowa Idea Podcast theme music written and performed by Paisley Bible (https://paisleybible.bandcamp.com/).

88. Bill Schmarzo

The Iowa Idea: Bill Schmarzo

“Don’t create boxes, create swirls.”

In this episode of The Iowa Idea Podcast, I’m joined by Bill Schmarzo. Bill is an author, professor, innovator, and consultant. He is the author of four books including The Economics of Data, Analytics and Digital Transformation. Bill is the former Chief Innovation Officer at Hitachi Vantara where he was responsible for driving Hitachi Vantara’s Data Science and “co-creation” efforts. He was selected for Hitachi Limited’s 2020 Solution Innovation Award for his ground-breaking work in data science and Automated Machine Learning. Bill has held leadership roles Dell EMC and Yahoo. He grew up in Charles City, IA. Bill attended Coe College where he majored in Math, Business Administration, and Computer Science. He played basketball and jazz trumpet. He earned his MBA at the Tippie College of Business at The University of Iowa.

Bill and I dig into the power of data science rooted in human-centered design. We explore the parallels between basketball, jazz, and innovation and what Bill calls “organizational improvisation.” Not to date ourselves, but we talk about some of our early tech experiences, including IBM 1130s and Syquest cartridges. I appreciate Bill’s description of data model drift, as the world continues to change and evolve around us and his call for “might” moments to help organizational learning. We look at the role diversity in high-performing teams and the importance of nurturing curiosity, and the ability to “unlearn,” so that we can learn new things. Bill shares his personal journey unlearning business intelligence to enable data science.

It was a pleasure having Bill join me on the podcast. I hope you enjoy the episode.

About Bill

Author, Professor, Innovator and Consultant – Data Science and Data Monetization Adjunct Professor, Menlo College

Honorary Professor, National University of Ireland-Galway

Executive Fellow, University of San Francisco

Dean of Big Data | Recognized global innovator, educator, and practitioner in the areas of Big Data, Data Science, Design Thinking, and Data Monetization | Creator of the “Big Data MBA” Curriculum | Filed 7 Data Science patents | Author of 4 books including “The Economics of Data, Analytics and Digital Transformation”

Bill has extensive hands-on experience in the areas of big data, advanced analytics, design thinking and data monetization.

Bill is the former Chief Innovation Officer at Hitachi Vantara where he was responsible for driving Hitachi Vantara’s Data Science and “co-creation” efforts.  He was selected for Hitachi Limited’s 2020 Solution Innovation Award for his ground-breaking work in data science and Automated Machine Learning.

Bill also has served as CTO at Dell EMC where he formulated the company’s Big Data Practice strategy, identified target markets, developed solution frameworks and led Analytics client engagements with his Vision Workshop, a methodology that links an organization’s strategic business initiatives with supporting data and analytics. As the VP of Analytics at Yahoo, Bill delivered the analytics tools and applications that optimized customers’ online marketing spend.

Bill has served on the City of San Jose’s Technology Innovation Board, and on the faculties of The Data Warehouse Institute and Strata. He is the author of “Big Data: Understanding How Data Powers Big Business” and “Big Data MBA: Driving Business Strategies with Data Science;” and his most recent book “The Economics of Data, Analytics, and Digital Transformation”. He is an avid blogger and was recently ranked the #4 Big Data influencer, #4 Data Science and #6 Digital Transformation influencer worldwide by Onalytica. He is a frequent speaker and his expertise is sought after by leading industry publications. He is a University of San Francisco School of Management (SOM) Executive Fellow and an Honorary Professor at the School of Business and Economics at the National University of Ireland-Galway.

Bill holds a Masters of Business Administration from University of Iowa and a Bachelor of Science degree in Mathematics, Computer Science and Business Administration from Coe College.

Links

Follow Bill on Twitter @schmarzo and LinkedIn www.linkedin.com/in/schmarzo.

The Economics of Data, Analytics, and Digital Transformation

https://amzn.to/2KawzMt

Mastering Nanoeconomics in the Era of Digital Transformation
https://www.datasciencecentral.com/profiles/blogs/mastering-nanoeconomics-in-the-era-of-digital-transformation

Ethical AI, Monetizing False Negatives and Growing Total Address

https://www.datasciencecentral.com/profiles/blogs/ethical-ai-monetizing-false-negatives-and-growing-total-addressab

Cassini Nazir on Curiosity – https://cassininazir.com/curious/

Credits

Episode produced by Spark Consulting Group (www.inspiredbyspark.com) in Iowa City, with support from Executive Podcast Solutions (https://www.executivepodcastsolutions.com/).

The Iowa Idea Podcast theme music written and performed by Paisley Bible (https://paisleybible.bandcamp.com/).

87. Jon Levy

The Iowa Idea: Jon Levy

“You’re Invited.”

In this episode of The Iowa Idea Podcast, I’m joined by Jon Levy. Jon is a behavioral scientist best known for his work in influence, human connection, and decision making. More than a decade ago, Jon founded The Influencers Dinner, a secret dining experience for industry leaders ranging from Nobel laureates, Olympians, celebrities, and executives, to artists and musicians. Guests cook dinner together, but can’t discuss their career or give their last name, and once seated to eat, they reveal who they are.

Jon’s second book, You’re Invited: The Art and Science of Cultivating Influence, will be on May 11. In it, he demonstrates the importance of human connection, trust, and community to accomplish what is most important to us.

We dig into Jon’s journey as an author and behavioral scientist. Our conversation explores some of the key concepts of Jon’s new book, You’re Invited, and ways that we might improve connection through trust and community. Jon shares the surprising impact our social networks have on our lives. Jon shares some intriguing concepts from behavioral science including the Ikea Effect and the Peak End Rule.

We discuss the powerful story of Daryl Davis and how, through the power of invitation, Daryl convinced over 200 members to leave the KKK.

It was a pleasure having Jon join me on the podcast. I hope you enjoy the episode…and if you could do me a favor. If you enjoy the podcast, please give it a positive rating and review on Apple Podcasts.

About Jon

Jon Levy is a behavioral scientist best known for his work in influence, human connection, and decision making. Jon specializes in applying the latest research to transform the ways companies approach marketing, sales, consumer engagement, and culture. His clients range from Fortune 500 brands, like Microsoft, Google, AB-InBev, and Samsung, to startups.

More than a decade ago, Jon founded The Influencers Dinner, a secret dining experience for industry leaders ranging from Nobel laureates, Olympians, celebrities, and executives, to artists, musicians, and even the Grammy winning voice of the bark from “Who Let the Dogs Out.” Guests cook dinner together, but can’t discuss their career or give their last name, and once seated to eat, they reveal who they are. Over time, these dinners developed into a community. With thousands of members, Influencers is the largest community of its type worldwide.

Jon’s second book, You’re Invited: The Art and Science of Cultivating Influence, will be released May of 2021. In it, he demonstrates the importance of human connection, trust and community to accomplishing what is most important to us.

In his free time, Jon works on outrageous projects. Among them spending a year traveling to all 7 continents, or to the world’s greatest events (Grand Prix, Art Basel, Burning Man, Running of the Bulls, etc.) and barely surviving to tell the tale. These Adventures were chronicled in his first book: The 2 AM Principle: Discover the Science of Adventure

Links

The Influencers (TED Talk & NY Times)

Jon’s Latest Book –  You’re Invited: The Art & Science of Cultivating Influence

Jon’s website – https://www.jonlevytlb.com/

Credits

Episode produced by Spark Consulting Group (www.inspiredbyspark.com) in Iowa City, with support from Executive Podcast Solutions (https://www.executivepodcastsolutions.com/).

The Iowa Idea Podcast theme music written and performed by Paisley Bible (https://paisleybible.bandcamp.com/).

86. Nina Lohman

The Iowa Idea: Nina Lohman

“Worry less about the label.”

In this episode of The Iowa Idea Podcast, I’m joined by Nina Lohman. Nina is a Writer, Editor, Publisher, and community builder. Her writing explores how the lived experience of chronic pain can be understood through medicine, theology, and philosophy. She is the Founder and Publisher of Brink, a literary journal dedicated to the hybrid, cross-genre work of Creatives who tend to reside outside traditional artistic disciplines. She is the Nonfiction Editor at PromptPress, a book-arts journal that pairs writers and visual artists to create new work. Nina is passionate about placemaking and community building. She serves on the board of directors for the Iowa City Downtown District, FilmScene, The James Gang, and the Iowa City Downtown Arts Alliance. She proudly worked on the Strengthen Grow Evolve Campaign led by The Englert Theatre and FilmScene to ensure Iowa City’s standing as The Greatest Small City for the Arts.

We dig into Nina’s journey as creative, her work exploring the lived experience of pain, and her latest creative project Brink. Brink focuses on “hybrid, cross-genre work of both emerging and established creatives who often reside outside traditional artistic disciplines. By providing space primed to instigate new ideas, Brink fosters dialogue and collaborative community across disciplines and cultural divides.” We explore the convergence of medicine, theology, and philosophy and the “unshareability” of pain. I really appreciate Nina’s approach to make creative space for those that don’t fit cleanly into a particular genre. Our conversation touched upon the importance of creative collaboration and support, as well as the importance of being intentional about the community where you choose to live.

It was a pleasure having Nina join me on the podcast. I hope you enjoy the episode.

About Nina

Nina Lohman is a Writer, Editor, Publisher, and community builder. Her writing explores how the lived experience of chronic pain can be understood through medicine, theology, and philosophy. She is the Founder and Publisher of Brink, a literary journal dedicated to the hybrid, cross-genre work of Creatives who tend to reside outside traditional artistic disciplines. She is the Nonfiction Editor at PromptPress, a book-arts journal that pairs writers and visual artists to create new work. Nina is passionate about placemaking and community building. She serves on the board of directors for the Iowa City Downtown District, FilmScene, The James Gang, and the Iowa City Downtown Arts Alliance. She proudly worked on the Strengthen Grow Evolve Campaign led by The Englert Theatre and FilmScene to ensure Iowa City’s standing as The Greatest Small City for the Arts.

Links

Brink Website: brinkliterary.com

Credits

Episode produced by Spark Consulting Group (www.inspiredbyspark.com) in Iowa City, with support from Executive Podcast Solutions (https://www.executivepodcastsolutions.com/).

The Iowa Idea Podcast theme music written and performed by Paisley Bible (https://paisleybible.bandcamp.com/).

85. Stephen McDonnell

The Iowa Idea: Stephen McDonnell

“Nothing cures fear faster than action.”

In this episode of The Iowa Idea Podcast, I’m joined by Stephen McDonnell from Cork, Ireland. Stephen is a leadership, performance, resilience & team development consultant, facilitator of transformation and cultural change professional who has been helping organizations across a broad range of industries globally. Stephen believes that every person & team has an abundance of unexplored potential. Stephen’s passion and purpose are to support individuals and teams to unleash this potential and help organizations build competitive advantage.

Stephen has a diverse background with varied knowledge achieved through leadership positions with organizations including the Gaelic Players Association (GPA). From a sporting perspective, Stephen has represented the Cork Senior Hurling team from 2010 to 2020 and he captained the team in 2016 & 2017 to Munster championship success.

I’m not sure if Stephen and I are related, but I come from a line McDonnells who left Cork in the 1800s and settled in what is now Clinton, Iowa. This Cork to Clinton connection pre-dates Iowa’s statehood. My relatives settled on the Iowa side of the Mississippi River when Iowa was a territory. So, it was fun to collaborate with McDonnell in Cork for this episode.

We dig into Stephen’s background and experience including captaining Cork’s championship hurling team. Stephen and I go deep into team and group dynamics. Stephen shares some great perspectives related to the conditions and environment that needs to be in place for teams to succeed and thrive. High performing teams just don’t happen – Stephen shares some of the key conditions, essentials and enablers, for successful team.

It was a pleasure having Stephen join me on the podcast. I hope you enjoy the episode.

About Stephen

Driving joy, connection, and exceptional performance in the pursuit of what’s possible.

Stephen is a Leadership, Performance, Resilience & Team Development consultant, facilitator of transformation and cultural change professional who has been helping organisations across a broad range of industries globally. Stephen believes that every person & team has an abundance of unexplored potential. Stephen’s passion and purpose are to support individuals & teams to unleash this potential and help organisations build competitive advantage.

Stephen gets a real kick out of working with teams and individuals at all levels,

but especially with senior leaders & teams and critical project teams where the stakes are high, and the pressure is on. The impact of a true team effectiveness and elite leadership at this level can have an immensely positive impact & ripple effect. In addition, Stephen believes that we learn the most when we are enjoying ourselves, and he brings this to his coaching with leaders and teams.

Stephen has a diverse background with varied knowledge achieved through leadership positions with organisations such as Arup Consulting Engineers, One Young World and the Gaelic Players Association (GPA). From a sporting perspective, Stephen has represented the Cork Senior Hurling team from 2010 to 2020 and he captained the team in 2016 & 2017 to Munster championship success.

Stephen’s intimate knowledge of high performance in highly competitive contexts and the steps required to extrapolate the true capability and capacity of an individual, team ororganisation, is unique. Stephen draws from his experience of regularly leading a team as captain in a highly competitive setting and performing in front of crowds of up to 83,000 people. Stephen is also a sought after Adjunct Lecturer in Munster Technological University and an Associate Consultant with the Irish Management Institute where Stephen teaches the art and science of true team effectiveness & effective leadership for winning teams. Stephen has developed and honed his expertise and conceptual models while working with some great leaders,coaches, mentors and performers – all of whom have challenged his performance, growth and learning.

Stephen believes there is potential for growth in every individual and team no matter how successful they are and takes pride in making a positive difference and leaving a tangible impact. Stephen lives in Cork City with his partner, Erika, their family and two

dogs. Stephen loves all things nature and wildlife, spending time in the mountains and swimming in the ocean. Stephen likes to travel to experience new cultures, to connect with new people and enjoy all that life has to offer.

Some Experience & Professional Credentials:

  • International Diploma Executive Coaching
  • Masters Certificate Professional Leadership
  • Certified UpAgear Strategy Execution Consultant
  • Certified Unbeatable Mind Consultant
  • 6 Team Conditions Advanced Practitioner
  • Harvard Team Diagnostic Survey Advanced
  • Honours Degree Structural Engineering
  • Lead Managing Engineer with Arup
  • Peak Performance Certified
  • Cork Senior Hurling Team Captain 2016 & 2017
  • Emotional Intelligence certified practitioner
  • Behavioural & Mindset Profiling practitioner
  • Irish University Lecturer
  • Associate Faculty Member at the IMI
  • Certified in Leadership Versatility

Links

https://www.linkedin.com/in/liveunbound/

Credits

Episode produced by Spark Consulting Group (www.inspiredbyspark.com) in Iowa City, with support from Executive Podcast Solutions (https://www.executivepodcastsolutions.com/).

The Iowa Idea Podcast theme music written and performed by Paisley Bible (https://paisleybible.bandcamp.com/).

84. Andrew Sherburne

The Iowa Idea: Andrew Sherburne

“It’s all about trust and relationships.”

In this episode of The Iowa Idea Podcast, I’m joined by Andrew Sherburne. Andrew is co-founder and Executive Director of FilmScene, Iowa City’s nonprofit cinema and a producer/director at Northland Films. His most recent film, Saving Brinton, was named one of “the Best Movies of 2018” (Washington Post). Andrew’s filmography includes Gold Fever (2013), which earned the 2013 International Federation for Human Rights Film Award, Forgotten Miracle (2010) and Pond Hockey (2008). His films have played at over 80 festivals in 43 countries. He is currently at work on two features, Hockeyland, a coming of age doc in Minnesota’s north country, and The Workshop, a portrait of the Iowa Writers’ Workshop.

We dig into Andrew’s journey as a film maker and community arts leader. We explore his connection to Minnesota and hockey as a rich area for human stories. Andrew shares the focus of Hockeyland and his observational verité style of filmmaking. Andrew shares how Saving Brinton came to be and how the framing of the story changed after meeting Mike Zahs. We talk about the importance of collaboration and community arts and the success of the Strengthen, Grow, Evolve campaign and why Iowa City is the “Greatest Small City for the Arts.”  I appreciated Andrew’s perspective regarding and ongoing dedication to improving the arts community, saying “It’s a process and commitment to always improving what we’re doing here.”

As a fan of film, hockey, community, collaboration, Minneapolis, and Iowa City, it was a treat sitting down with Andrew. It was a pleasure having Andrew join me on the podcast. I hope you enjoy the episode.

About Andrew

Andrew Sherburne is co-founder and Executive Director of FilmScene, Iowa City’s nonprofit cinema and a producer/director at Northland Films. His most recent film Saving Brinton, premiered at AFI Docs, aired nationwide on PBS through America Reframed and was named one of “the Best Movies of 2018” (Washington Post). His filmography includes Gold Fever (2013), which was awarded the 2013 International Federation for Human Rights Film Award, Forgotten Miracle (2010) and Pond Hockey (2008) and his films have played at over 80 festivals in 43 countries. Andrew is a member of the Documentary Producers Alliance, has served as an adjunct lecturer on film at the University of Iowa and Grinnell College, and was named to both DOC NYC and Corridor Business Journal’s “40 under 40” lists in 2018. He is currently at work on two features, Hockeyland, a coming-of-age doc in Minnesota’s north country, and The Workshop, a patient portrait of the prestigious Iowa Writers’ Workshop.

Links

www.icfilmscene.org

www.northlandfilms.com

Credits

Episode produced by Spark Consulting Group (www.inspiredbyspark.com) in Iowa City, with support from Executive Podcast Solutions (https://www.executivepodcastsolutions.com/).

The Iowa Idea Podcast theme music written and performed by Paisley Bible (https://paisleybible.bandcamp.com/).

83. Ben McDougal

The Iowa Idea: Ben McDougal

“You don’t need this book.”

In this episode of The Iowa Idea Podcast, I’m joined by Ben McDougal. Ben is a tech founder, multimedia marketer, entrepreneurial ecosystem builder and inspired author in the connected era. He evolves ideas into reality and accelerates others through the art of connection.

We dig into Ben’s journey as an entrepreneur and network connector, starting with his early foray into web design and SEO, to his work as an intrepreneur, to his process authoring You Don’t Need This Book: Entrepreneurship in the Connected Era. With the publishing of his book and his entrepreneurial spirit, Ben created his own publishing company. We explore his role in the 1 Million Cups initiative, community building project, from the Kaufman foundation, and the importance of moving “at the speed of trust.” I appreciated Ben’s focus on accelerating others through community and the “art of connection.” He describes the power of having his hero, Seth Godin, contribute to Ben’s book.

It was a pleasure having Ben on the podcast and describe where he gets his innovative energy. I hope you enjoy the episode. Please check the link in the description for $5.00 off if you buy Ben’s book – it’s like he’s buying you a cup of coffee. Use “IOWA” to save $5 on signed softcovers ordered direct.

About Ben

Ben McDougal is a tech founder, multimedia marketer, entrepreneurial ecosystem builder and inspired author in the connected era. He evolves ideas into reality and accelerates others through the art of connection.

Links

LINK: https://BenMcDougal.com

MEDIA: https://bit.ly/YDNTB-media

YDNTB: https://bit.ly/YouDontNeedThisBook

YDNTB BONUS: Use “IOWA” to save $5 on signed softcovers ordered direct.

Credits

Episode produced by Spark Consulting Group (www.inspiredbyspark.com) in Iowa City, with support from Executive Podcast Solutions (https://www.executivepodcastsolutions.com/).

The Iowa Idea Podcast theme music written and performed by Paisley Bible (https://paisleybible.bandcamp.com/).

82. Nate Kaeding

The Iowa Idea: Nate Kaeding

“The importance of design.”

In this episode of The Iowa Idea Podcast, I’m joined by Nate Kaeding. Nate is the Director of Business Development for Build to Suit, Inc. a construction management and real estate development firm based in Bettendorf and Coralville, Iowa. Nate is an active venture capital investor in several Corridor businesses and real estate developments including: Involta, Higher Learning Technologies, Pullman Bar & Diner, St. Burch Tavern, Big Grove Brewery, Tailgate Clothing and others.

Born and raised in the Iowa City area and attended the University of Iowa. As a student-athlete and graduated with a BA in History and a Secondary Education Social Studies teaching certificate from the College of Education.  As a collegiate athlete Nate was a football team captain, earned both academic and athletic First Team All-American honors, is the all-time leading scorer in Iowa Football history and is a member of both the Iowa High School Athletic Association Hall of Fame and University of Iowa Athletics Hall of Fame.

Nate was the 65th overall selection in the 2004 NFL Draft.  He went on to play nine seasons for the San Diego Chargers and was twice selected to the Pro Bowl.  Upon retirement from the NFL in 2013, Nate moved back to Iowa City and completed MBA from the University of Iowa Tippie School of Business.

We dig into Nate’s journey as a kicker, being the first scholarship offer under Kirk Ferentz at Iowa; his interests in history, education, and business, collaboration, and design. We talk about Zen and Art of Archery and the lessons Nate has applied to kicking and business.  We explore the power of experiences that bring together the intersections of brand, history, and experiential design. I appreciated Nate’s willingness to share his insights and lessons with Tailgate Clothing, as well as his belief in the importance of design, collaboration, and community in business. I was especially excited to hear more about Burch the Bear. Long before Herky, Iowa’s first football mascot was a live bear. Burch the Bear has inspired brewing a local supper club.

It was a pleasure having Nate on the podcast. I hope you enjoy the episode.

About Nate

Nate Kaeding is the Director of Business Development for Build to Suit, Inc. a construction management and real estate development firm based in Bettendorf and Coralville, Iowa. Prior to his role with Build to Suit, Inc., Nate served as the Director of Retail Development for the Iowa City Downtown District where he managed economic development and various marketing, branding and place-making initiatives for the district.  Nate is also an active venture capital investor in several Corridor businesses and real estate developments including: Involta, Higher Learning Technologies, Pullman Bar & Diner, St. Burch Tavern, Big Grove Brewery, Tailgate Clothing, 245 Kingston and numerous others.  He serves on the Board of Directors for MidWestOne Bank, the Johnson County Community Foundation and the Iowa Sports Foundation.

Born and raised in the Iowa City/Coralville area, Nate was a three-sport athlete at Iowa City West High School and was named the Iowa High School Athlete of the Year in 2000 by the Des Moines Register after winning state championships in football, basketball and soccer.  He went on to attend the University of Iowa as a student-athlete and graduated with a BA in History and a Secondary Education Social Studies teaching certificate from the College of Education.  As a collegiate athlete Nate was a football team captain, earned both academic and athletic First Team All-American honors, is the all-time leading scorer in Iowa Football history and is a member of both the Iowa High School Athletic Association Hall of Fame and University of Iowa Athletics Hall of Fame.

Nate was the 65th overall selection in the 2004 NFL Draft.  He went on to play nine seasons for the San Diego Chargers and was twice selected to the Pro Bowl.  Upon retirement from the NFL in 2013, Nate moved back to Iowa City and completed his Masters in Business Administration from the University of Iowa Tippie School of Business.

Links

LinkedIn – https://www.linkedin.com/in/nate-kaeding/

St. Burch – https://www.saintburchtavern.com/

Pullman – http://pullmandiner.com/

Burch the Bear – http://bit.ly/BurchTheBear

Zen and Art of Archery (Herrigel) – https://amz.run/4Uei

Credits

Episode produced by Spark Consulting Group (www.inspiredbyspark.com) in Iowa City, with support from Executive Podcast Solutions (https://www.executivepodcastsolutions.com/).

The Iowa Idea Podcast theme music written and performed by Paisley Bible (https://paisleybible.bandcamp.com/).

81. Varun

The Iowa Idea: Varun

“It happens all the time.”

In this episode of The Iowa Idea Podcast, I’m joined by researcher, entrepreneur and author Varun Murugesan. Varun is cofounder and Head of Research at Apple & Banana where he believes that everyone can do fruitful research. Varun has spent his career immersed in psychology, technology and design at organizations like Facebook, Unitedhealth Group and Best Buy, along with rising startups across the country. When he’s not sharing perspectives, collaborations and applications of fruitful research, he can be seen teaching his dog how to roll over, going for runs and playing Last of Us.

Varun and I dig into his journey into UX research and finding a more meaningful career. We discuss the founding Apple and Banana, what it’s like to build a company with your brothers, who are identical triplets. We mix it up on ways to improve collaboration, embrace leaderless teams.

Check out the special link that Varun and the Apple and Banana team created for our listeners, as he shares his journey and the things he learned as a UX researcher.

It was a pleasure having Varun on the podcast. I hope you enjoy the episode.

About Varun

Varun is cofounder and Head of Research at Apple & Banana where he believes that everyone can do fruitful research. He’s spent his career immersed in psychology, technology and design at F100s like Facebook, Unitedhealth Group and Best Buy along with rising startups across the country. When he’s not sharing perspectives, collaborations and applications of fruitful research, he can be seen teaching his dog how to roll over, going for runs and playing Last of Us.

Links

https://www.appleandbanana.org/podcast/the-iowa-idea

Credits

Episode produced by Spark Consulting Group (www.inspiredbyspark.com) in Iowa City, with support from Executive Podcast Solutions (https://www.executivepodcastsolutions.com/).

The Iowa Idea Podcast theme music written and performed by Paisley Bible (https://paisleybible.bandcamp.com/).